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“Christmas in Mexico...Priceless”

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Royal Decameron Complex
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Bucerias
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed December 30, 2012

We returned yesterday from a 7 day trip to the Bucerias and the Royal Decameron. The weather was spectacular and spending time together, as a family in a different climate, for Christmas was awesome.

The grounds of the resort are immaculate and colourful. Groundkeepers are out early and keep the resort looking lush, clean and green. The resort has 5 pools and you are welcome to use anyone you like if over 18. The pool at block 1 is the activity pool and has games, music and fun pumping each day. The pool at block 5 is an adult only pool and is pretty quiet. We spent most of our time at the pool by block 3 and loved it. It was refreshing after spending some time on the beach or cooling off after being in the sun. There is also a bar quite close and Hector, the bartender, learned our drinks very quickly. The view of the ocean is also great. All of the pools have bars close by and the service staff is friendly and outgoing. The alcohol at the bars is not of the best quality, but flows freely and they will accommodate your requests for doubles or larger drinks. There is also a Lounge Bar that is open from 5-11:00. It has TV’s and they broadcast North American sports. It is a great place for before and/or after dinner drinks.

We had 3 rooms on the second floor of building three. I had emailed the hotel about a month prior to our arrival stating that we would like to stay in either building 3 or 4. This was based on the numerous reviews we read on this forum beforehand. As we were a family of 7 (65, 47, 44, 40, 38, 13, and 11) travelling together, we wanted 2 rooms close together for Granma and 2 grandchildren that were next to the kids’ parents' room. We requested a third room on the same floor for my husband and I, so we would all be in the same area. They accommodated us perfectly. Granma and the kids took the room furthest away from their parents and aunt and uncle. It was a room with 2 balconies (3229) and an amazing view of the pool area and ocean. Granma paid for the trip, so good for her. We all felt safe walking and staying in our rooms.
The rooms were clean and of average Mexican standards. Nothing overly fancy; almost like an Econo-Lodge. However, we didn't spend any time in our rooms other than to sleep and shower. The one thing to note is that deliveries to the restaurant between buildings 3 and 4 start quite early (at least 4:30 a.m.) in the morning. We were awakened each morning by the trucks and employees unloading. You could also hear the slamming of dishes as they got ready for the morning meal. However, we quickly learned to close our bathroom window and door and that seemed to keep the noise down. I would suggest avoiding the rooms at the end of the halls in building 3 if you are a light sleeper.

The buffets for breakfast were good with a lot of choice. Omelet and fresh egg stations, fresh fruit and bread, cheeses, yogurts cereals, potatoes, ham, bacon, sausage and a wide selection of juices could be found each morning. No need to eat the same breakfast 2 days in a row, unless you wanted to. The Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve was fabulous with real turkeys carved in front of you and a huge variety of salads, meats and desserts. It was a North American Christmas dinner, but with the wonderful sound of waves and sand in the background. On Thursday night, they had a Mexican fiesta with a Mariachi band and a parade through the buffet area. Many Mexican dishes to try, but also lots of other choices, as well. All in all, I would say that the buffet food was average. We could find something to eat each day to satisfy our hunger, but nothing really stood out. Though the french fries and guacamole were quite good.
We did book three meals at the al-a-carte restaurants.

You need to line up for numbers by the Flamingo Restaurant or by Block 4 in order to make reservations for these restaurants. Numbers are given out at 7:30 a.m., but most people start lining up before 7:00 a.m. They start making reservations at 8:00 a.m. and you can book for that night and the next night. It is often difficult to get a number and many people left disappointed. I went down on 3 mornings and I was able to get reservations for our group on 3 occasions for the restaurants we wanted. A lot of people thought that there had to be a better system, but it worked for us.

Rodizio is a Brazilian restaurant with lots of meat. Some of it tastes a bit different than at home, but everyone was able to find something they liked to eat. Piccolos is an Italian restaurant and we had 2 dinners there. I enjoyed it more than Rodizio. Both of these restaurants seem to be the ones that most people tried to reserve. They do have a selection of 5 al-a-carte restaurants and most seemed to be full on the nights we were there.

The staff at all the restaurants and bars were attentive and friendly. It is obvious that they take pride in their work and try to meet the needs of all their guests. Housekeeping staff was also friendly and greeted us each day with Hola or good morning. They did miss towels, water and toilet paper in a couple of our rooms, on a few occasions, but a quick call to the front desk took care of our needs. All in all, The Royal Decameron was an excellent choice for our family vacation and I would not hesitate to return.

Room Tip: Choose a room away from the restaurants. Blocks 5 and 6 have larger pools but are not on the beach...
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank dakbail
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed December 30, 2012 via mobile

Best food of all the AI resorts we went to in Mexico over the years.
Hard-working knowledgeable restaurant, Bar, Animation & housekeeping Staff.
Excellent non-smoking environment i.e. dining, theatre.
Nice tennis court.
Enjoyed the iguana tree at feeding time.
Will return!

  • Stayed: December 2012
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2  Thank tequillasunriser
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 29, 2012

Just got back today from a week at the Royal Decameron. We had a blast! Every morning was spent at the beach and every afternoon we were at the pool. There are 6 blocks, each catering towards a different type of traveller. E.g. We were in block 6 which is perfect for families with younger kids as it is farthest from the disco and the shows so is quiet. Block 5 is more for older couples, and has adult only pool. Younger travellers are best suited for blocks 1 and 2. The place is very clean, inside and out. Very well taken care of. The staff are super friendly, and always smiling. There are a number of restaurants/buffets so there is always something for everyone in the family. We lunched every day at the snack bar in block 6. Best French fries I think I have ever had.....fresh washed, cut and cooked right there! Best salsa and guacamole there too. And waiter Juan was great!
The only downside to the resort was that to get seats at the Italian a la carte restaurant, you had to lineup by 7 am on the day you want to eat there, and you can't book ahead. We never did get to eat there. I think they could improve the booking system. But other then that, it is a great place and we will likely go again.
We were there with our 6 year old, and he had such a good time. We stayed one week, and I think we could have done with 10 days! We didn't go on any trips or excursions, but I think I would next time.

Room Tip: Block 6 if you have younger kids with early bed times..... Nice and quiet.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank finedinerBC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 29, 2012

My 20 year old daughter and I just got back from spending Christmas at the Royal Decameron. We had a fabulous time. Our hotel room was not fancy by any means, but comfortable, clean and quiet, which is all you really need. We were in building 5 which is in front of the adult only pool so no kids running around screaming and splashing. And even though building 5 is closest to the outdoor theater and disco we didn't hear any noise coming from there when we were trying to sleep.

The entire complex is well kept and the staff work night and day to keep it pristine. The food choices are plentiful with 2 buffets serving 2 different styles every night as well as 5 restaurants that you need reservations to get in to for dinner. Indeed, the reservation process was the only negative about this hotel complex as you had to get a number at 7:30 am and then wait your turn to make reservations. You could only reserve for two nights at a time. Not my idea of fun to have to wake up at that hour while on holiday, but, as I say, this is the only negative thing I can find to say about the hotel. The Piccolo was the best of the "reservation only" restaurants but the others were also very good. If you choose to skip the whole reservation process and eat at the buffets only you'll still have plenty of good food. Certainly no chance of starving!

The animation staff are friendly and always doing something to engage the guests. My special favorite was the Michael Jackson lookalike whose name unfortunately escapes me but all of them were very outgoing and obviously enjoy their jobs.

The evening shows were fantastic! Mr. Looky Looky and his (very hot!) dance troop were extremely professional and kept us guests entertained in a big way. Costumes, lighting and music were awesome. We didn't miss a single show and looked forward to attending every day.

To say the least, we were very satisfied with the Royal Decameron and would go back in a heartbeat. I recommend it most wholeheartedly!

Room Tip: Stay in building 5 if you want peace and quiet; building 1if you want to be near all the activities.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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4  Thank Janet M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 29, 2012

A group of 19 friends and family gathered at the Royal Decameron to celebrate a wedding.

The pricing was excellent. The grounds were always immaculate. The staff were SUPERB (Hats off to Claudio for putting together a wedding that satisfied my very detail oriented and picky daughter. Her words, as we left, were "I could not have had a better wedding."). The food was always very edible. The rooms, while basic, were perfect for what we wanted (and paid for) and always comfortable.

The resort went out of its way to accommodate our party member who is wheelchair bound due to MS.

The wedding was absolutely BEAUTIFUL! It was held on the beach just as the sun was getting ready to set, and we took over the Mexican restaurant for the reception (easier for the wheelchair to navigate). Other resort guests seemed to have a lot of fun watching us prepare, and the bulkhead was lined with observers, but they were all very respectful and did not interfere.

The photographer the resort uses, Popo of PopoRazzi, is EXCELLENT! Several of the pictures are so beautiful that people have trouble believing they are not fake! The bride also did a Trash the Dress session the next day, and it was wonderful!

The weather helped enormously by being sunny, with a light breeze, and in the 80's every day. We didn't want to leave!

Do I recommend this resort for a vacation? Absolutely!

Do I recommend this resort for a wedding? Definitely!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank thatdamnredhead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 28, 2012

been there 3 times in last 3 yrs. Lowest price was late Nov.(under $500). Excellent Pacific sunsets, long beach with a 20 min walk into town (Bucerias). West-end units in Block #3 have ocean view & close to everything. Line-ups for a la cartes are short at reservation counter near Block #1 pool. Block 1 buffet is beachfront with outdoor patio A-1 for breakfast & lunch. Italian restaurant is excellent but sit outside beside the reflecting pool as it's too noisy inside. Took local buses to several towns & P.V. for less than $1---trip to Salulita (surfing town) thru mountains is nice. Lots of vendors & timeshare guys on the beach *** met a young couple who went to a timeshare #meeting# & were #trapped# for 4 hours--DONT GO!! Met several Canadians that have been to this resort 5 to 20 times.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Wayne H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 27, 2012

I have been to Mexico 4 times over the last 8-10 years, Manzinillo, royal decameron puerto Vallarta, and twice to the Mayan - grand sunset princess and sandos carocol eco spa resort. Out of the 4 resorts that I have been to, this has been my favorite. Beach was great, pools were great, rooms were great. It also has the besat entertainment of any resort I've been to. This was my best trip ever!

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with friends
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4  Thank Leahd79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Royal Decameron Complex

Address: Lazaro Cardenas 150, Bucerias 63732, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Nayarit > Riviera Nayarit > Bucerias
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Bucerias
Price Range: $131 - $388 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Royal Decameron Complex 3*
Number of rooms: 620
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Royal Decameron Complex composed of three hotel units: Flamingos, Tropical and Royal, is located 20 minutes from Puerto Vallarta International Airport on the most exciting and extensive beach of the beautiful Bay of Banderas in the typical Mexican town of Bucerias in Riviera Nayarit. The colorful architecture of the Royal Decameron Complex offers 5 swimming pools, 4 of which are suitable for children, and long stretch of beach where you can enjoy different activities, non-motorized water sports and bar services. You can also enjoy a large number of buffet and a la carte options with specialized restaurants including: JAP JAP, Wok, MexicanoFusion, Piccolo and Steak House, among others. We also offer 6 bars along the beach and beside the swimming pools. The Royal Decameron Complex also has other installations like the Vallarta disco, 3 tennis courts, one soccer pitch and a fun Kids Club. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Royal Decameron Vallarta
Royal Decameron Hotel
Royal Decameron Puerto Vallarta Bucerias
Royal Decameron Mexico
Royal Decameron Puerto Vallarta Mexico
Royal Decameron Complex Puerto Vallarta
Royal De Cameron
Royal Decameron Nuevo Vallarta
Royal Decameron Puerto Vallarta Hotel
Puerto Vallarta Royal Decameron

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